Tal­ent sto­ries

Edu­ra­do, Jun, Adero and Fah­mi­da are Inter­na­tion­al House Oulu ambas­sadors 2024.

Would you like to get to know what it’s like to study or work in Oulu? Meet our inter­na­tion­al tal­ent who live in Oulu and read their inspi­ra­tional sto­ries.

Embark on a cap­ti­vat­ing jour­ney through the lives of indi­vid­u­als who have cho­sen Oulu as their spring­board to suc­cess. Whether you’re con­tem­plat­ing your next edu­ca­tion­al ven­ture or seek­ing excit­ing career oppor­tu­ni­ties, let the jour­neys of our inter­na­tion­al tal­ents guide and inspire you. Dis­cov­er how Oulu can be the back­drop for your own suc­cess sto­ry.

Glob­al Minds in Oulu – Watch their videos

Join Fah­mi­da as she shares her jour­ney from Bangladesh to Oulu, where she pur­sued her pas­sion for pub­lic health as a PhD stu­dent. Dis­cov­er how she nav­i­gates the con­trast­ing Finnish sea­sons, find­ing beau­ty in both harsh win­ters and stun­ning sum­mers.

Hear Fah­mi­da’s nsights

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Fangy­ing “Fan­ni” Li is orig­i­nal­ly from Chi­na. Cur­rent­ly, Fan­ni works at the IH Oulu. She admires Finnish work cul­ture. “Some­how here, this free­dom brings you more pos­si­bil­i­ties. You can do what­ev­er you want.”

Watch Fan­ni’s sto­ry

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Explore Oulu with Adri­an, a Tex­an who has made this Finnish city his home for over a decade. Adri­an shares his jour­ney of adapt­ing to a new lifestyle, enjoy­ing the nat­ur­al beau­ty, and rais­ing his son in Oulu.

Dive into Adri­an’s world

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Adero, an Afro mil­len­ni­al design­er from Nairo­bi, Kenya, moved to Oulu with her fam­i­ly. Now she shares her jour­ney of adapt­ing to Finnish cul­ture, pur­su­ing her pas­sion for soft­ware devel­op­ment, and enjoy­ing the city’s vibrant cul­ture.

Learn about Adero’s life

Eduar­do Acos­ta is from Colom­bia. Over the past two years, he has been able to expe­ri­ence all that Oulu has to offer. “When I came here, I was sur­prised by how you can find many things here, how well con­nect­ed every­thing is.”

More about Eduardo’s life

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She­fat Islam came from Bahrain to Oulu and fell in love with the city’s nature. What was most impor­tant to her was that her daugh­ter adjust­ed well. She­fat thinks Oulu is a pic­turesque and calm place, a post­card city.

Watch She­fat’s inter­view

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Jun Naka­mu­ra decid­ed to move from Japan to Oulu and study for his master’s degree at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Oulu. He is very impressed by Finnish sauna cul­ture. “In the sauna, Finns are more open com­pared to oth­er places.”

See Jun’s sto­ry

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Dive into our tal­ent sto­ries


Tak­ing the Leap: Ladislav’s Jour­ney to a Bet­ter Life

What hap­pens, when you take a leap into the unknown, leav­ing your own life behind in search of some­thing new? Meet Ladislav, the cur­rent Head of Oper­a­tions in Bloom Fin­land, who moved from Slo­va­kia, inspired by Oulu’s peace­ful nature.


Max’s Expe­ri­ence: Set­tling Down and Thriv­ing in Oulu

Max’s jour­ney from a small town near Lon­don to set­tling down in Oulu is noth­ing short of inspir­ing! From unex­pect­ed twists in his career to find­ing a sense of belong­ing in a new coun­try, Max shares his amaz­ing expe­ri­ence.


Max Raymond
Woman sitting on the grass

Embrac­ing Change: Fariha’s Jour­ney from Dha­ka to Oulu

Meet Far­i­ha, a master’s stu­dent at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Oulu. From Bangladesh to the serene charm of Oulu, Fin­land, her jour­ney has been noth­ing short of a trans­for­ma­tive one. Dis­cov­er how the warmth of Oulu’s peo­ple, the chal­lenges of learn­ing a new lan­guage, and the beau­ty of Finnish nature have shaped her expe­ri­ence.


From Slo­va­kia to Fin­land: The Expe­ri­ence of Tomas in Oulu

Intro­duc­ing Tomas Sle­sar, a Slo­va­kian native who’s called Oulu home for 14 years. From nav­i­gat­ing the con­trasts of Finnish sea­sons to ful­ly embrac­ing the warmth of Finnish cul­ture.


Tomas Slesar
Woman standing in Oulu in the middle of Christmas trees

Chas­ing Stars in Oulu: Nav­i­gat­ing the Path to Your Dreams

Meet Rabia, a cer­ti­fied teacher from Pak­istan, cur­rent­ly enrolled at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Oulu, study­ing Learn­ing, Edu­ca­tion and Tech­nol­o­gy (LET) mas­ter’s pro­gram.


Pur­su­ing Dreams from Brazil: Eduardo’s Path of Grat­i­tude

Meet Eduar­do Tom­i­na­ga, who’s been liv­ing in Oulu for almost 5 years now. He’s a PhD stu­dent at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Oulu, con­duct­ing research on wire­less com­mu­ni­ca­tions as part of the 6G Flag­ship team. He’s orig­i­nal­ly from Flo­ri­a­nop­o­lis, Brazil.


Polina at International House Oulu

Work­ing hard to pur­sue the dreams: Polina’s sto­ry of appre­ci­a­tion

Polina’s jour­ney in Fin­land did not start in Oulu, but she is hap­py that it led her there. She is now pur­su­ing a degree in Tourism and dreams of doing impact­ful work at the city ser­vices.


From Tehran to Oulu – The Inspir­ing Path of Sara Saroukhani

Sara stud­ied her master´s degree in Envi­ron­men­tal Engi­neer­ing at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Oulu. She is cur­rent­ly work­ing in KONE as a mate­r­i­al spe­cial­ist.


Sara Saroukhani

Embrac­ing Oulu: Adri­an’s Tale of Growth, Chal­lenges, and Suc­cess

Adri­an Canales is orig­i­nal­ly from Texas, USA. He has been liv­ing and call­ing Oulu his home for eleven years. Adrian’s plan com­ing to Fin­land was to start a new chap­ter of his life, con­tin­ue his edu­ca­tion and start a career.


Vasilii’s Jour­ney to Oulu: A Sto­ry of Aca­d­e­m­ic Pur­suit and Cul­tur­al Inte­gra­tion

With­out ever hav­ing heard about the city before, Vasilii Bal­anov decid­ed to seize an oppor­tu­ni­ty and trav­elled to Fin­land, deter­mined to start an adven­ture in a new coun­try.


Oulu letters and International talent

Cold Win­ters, Warm Hearts: Eduardo’s Finnish Adven­ture

Eduar­do Acos­ta, orig­i­nal­ly from Colom­bia, is research­ing cir­cu­lar econ­o­my at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Oulu. He is also an Inter­na­tion­al House Oulu Ambas­sador.


Nav­i­gat­ing Oulu through its dif­fer­ent sea­sons: adapt­ing to a new life in the North

Beat­riz Rocha, 25, came here to do her master’s degree in Learn­ing, Edu­ca­tion and Tech­nol­o­gy. Cur­rent­ly, she works as a Mar­ket­ing Trainee at Business­Oulu.


Beatriz Rocha

“How Oulu sup­ports my career and sur­rounds me with nature”

Mov­ing to Oulu has had a sig­nif­i­cant impact on Arjane’s life. She is from the Nether­lands, and moved to Fin­land in 2018. After liv­ing in Jyväskylä for a cou­ple of years, she came to Oulu just over a year ago.


From Film Indus­try to Oulu: Naida’s Adven­ture of New Begin­nings

In a world where indi­vid­u­als seek to expe­ri­ence new begin­nings, Nai­da Valencia’s sto­ry moti­vates the pow­er of step­ping out of one’s com­fort zone and wel­com­ing the unknown.


Naida Valencia
Man smiling and posing

Meet Kevin Marples: “I been able to prac­tise my Finnish in a friend­ly envi­ron­ment”

Kevin Marples is orig­i­nal­ly from the UK and moved to Fin­land in 2022. Kevin has been work­ing as an intern at Inter­na­tion­al House, Oulu as part of his Inte­gra­tion Train­ing Course.


A Sto­ry All About Explor­ing Dif­fer­ent Cul­tures, Study­ing, and Con­nec­tions

Nada Abass is orig­i­nal­ly from Egypt and cur­rent­ly liv­ing in Fin­land. Nada’s jour­ney took a fas­ci­nat­ing turn when she had the oppor­tu­ni­ty to become a Com­mu­ni­ca­tion Trainee at Inter­na­tion­al House Oulu.


From Ghana to Fin­land: Lukumanu’s path to Project Man­age­ment

In a world full of oppor­tu­ni­ties, Luku­manu Iddrisu’s remark­able jour­ney took him from the vibrant streets of Ghana to the unique city of Vaasa, Fin­land.


Embrac­ing the Mag­ic of Oulu: A Jour­ney of Inte­gra­tion and Explo­ration

Pavani is delight­ed to share her incred­i­ble jour­ney arriv­ing in the enchant­i­ng city of Oulu, Fin­land, in August 2022. Hail­ing from the beau­ti­ful island of Sri Lan­ka,


From Tex­tile Design in South Korea to Social Ser­vices in Oulu, Fin­land

Life has a way of guid­ing us on unex­pect­ed paths, lead­ing to incred­i­ble trans­for­ma­tions. Meet Bora Kim, a kind indi­vid­ual who had a unique jour­ney from South Korea to Oulu, Fin­land.


”Oulu is a place where pas­sion­ate peo­ple and beau­ti­ful nature are wel­com­ing you”

Jun Naka­mu­ra is orig­i­nal­ly from Japan. Cur­rent­ly, he stud­ies MSc. in Inter­na­tion­al Busi­ness Man­age­ment at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Oulu.


Woman with lake view

“There is some­thing for every­one in Oulu”

She­fat Islam is orig­i­nal­ly from Bahrain. Cur­rent­ly, she is a com­mu­ni­ca­tions intern and stud­ies MSc. in Mar­ket­ing at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Oulu.


“Know­ing peo­ple here is what makes things eas­i­er”

Moa­men Ibrahim, 28, is orig­i­nal­ly from Egypt. He works now as a Machine Learn­ing Engi­neer at Soli­ta. He has been here in Oulu for five years.


Man smiling
Woman smiling

“Don’t say ‘No’ when oppor­tu­ni­ties come knock­ing”

Vanes­sa Phekani came to Oulu from Malawi. She hold a bachelor’s degree in pub­lic admin­is­tra­tion and soci­ol­o­gy, and a master’s degree in edu­ca­tion and glob­al­i­sa­tion from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Oulu.


“Don’t get annoyed by long dark days in win­ter, you have snow and auro­ras”

Jawad Malik came here from Pak­istan to study master’s in edu­ca­tion and tech­nol­o­gy and pur­sue his pas­sion in telecom­mu­ni­ca­tion.


Man watching winter scenery in Oulu

“What I love about the peo­ple here is that they are great lis­ten­ers”

Kamal Singh came to Oulu in 2010 for his stud­ies from India. At the Uni­ver­si­ty of Oulu, he stud­ied to be a wire­less com­mu­ni­ca­tion engi­neer. Cur­rent­ly, Kamal is work­ing as a Net­work coor­di­na­tor.


“Win­ter activ­i­ties in Oulu make it an even more spe­cial city”

Moustafa Khairi is work­ing as a machine learn­ing oper­a­tions engi­neer in Oulu. He is 25 years old, and his home city is Alexan­dria, Egypt.


Kiran Pandit

”Oulu is a help­ful place for inter­na­tion­al stu­dents, and peo­ple are nice”

Kiran Pan­dit came to Fin­land from Nepal and com­plet­ed a Bachelor’s Degree in Inter­na­tion­al Busi­ness at Oulu Uni­ver­si­ty of Applied Sci­ences (OAMK). He is a chair­per­son of the board of Pin­tames­tar­it.

“Dur­ing my first walks in Oulu, I felt like I was in a fairy tale”

Déb­o­ra Oliveira, 34, is from São Paulo, Brazil. Besides doing a master’s in edu­ca­tion and glob­al­i­sa­tion at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Oulu, she is a com­mu­ni­ca­tions trainee at Oulu Tal­ent Hub.

Woman smiling at the front of Oulu University

“If you want to work in Oulu, believe in your­self and push hard”

Vik­tors Sobolevs came to Oulu from Latvia, and stud­ied at Oulu Uni­ver­si­ty of Applied Sci­ences (Oamk). Now, he works as a busi­ness prod­uct man­ag­er at Polar.

How Oulu became a must-go place for a for­mer BBC jour­nal­ist?

Right now, Eri­ka Benke is work­ing as a con­trib­u­tor to BBC News and as a free­lance jour­nal­ist. Before mov­ing to Oulu, she lived in Lon­don for 23 years. She found here the qual­i­ty of life she was look­ing for. “After two years of work­ing in Oulu, I’m still as relaxed as if I was on hol­i­day”, she says.

Woman smiling next to trees

The incred­i­ble jour­ney of Chiara Boset­ti

Oulu Tal­ent Hub Ambas­sador Chiara Boset­ti, orig­i­nal­ly from Italy, came to Oulu one year ago. “I had great expec­ta­tions, and I cer­tain­ly got what I was look­ing for”, she says.

Doris Yue believes her dreams will come true in Oulu

Doris Yue, 35, came to Oulu from Hong Kong. She is mar­ried with a Finnish man and moved to Oulu about two and a half years ago. Now she works as an archi­tect and enjoys her life.

Nainen hymyilee kameralle

“North­ern Lights – the best thing to expe­ri­ence in Oulu”

Sharmin Farah came to Oulu from Bangladesh. Her life has changed sig­nif­i­cant­ly dur­ing the five years she have lived in Fin­land. Though it has been a roller­coast­er ride, I am enjoy­ing this jour­ney, Sharmin says.

”You must come to Oulu with an open mind and a big smile”

Jun­naid Iqbal works as a Sys­tem Sim­u­la­tion Engi­neer at Nokia. He has been in Oulu near­ly two and a half years.

Woman with flowers

“I feel pos­i­tive about my pos­si­bil­i­ties here”

Niy­ati Kandikan­ti is an ambas­sador for Oulu Tal­ent Hub, and she enjoys net­work­ing. – There are many oppor­tu­ni­ties in Oulu to inter­act with oth­er inter­na­tion­al stu­dents and vis­it new places.


“Oulu is a per­fect envi­ron­ment for fam­i­lies”

Tama­ra Louis, 30, is an archi­tec­tur­al design­er liv­ing in Oulu. She came here from Rus­sia in Sep­tem­ber 2012. We inter­viewed Tama­ra about her thoughts on liv­ing and work­ing in Oulu.

“I think every­body can find friends here”

Maja Tern­ing is from Trom­sø in North­ern Nor­way. She has been liv­ing here in Oulu for 16 years now, and work­ing with Business­Oulu for about eight years.